Now, seeing as I'm a huge Animal Crossing fan, I decided to pick up Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer, and seeing as everyone I know on Tumblr loves it to death, I decided to give it a chance.
Personally, I don't like it very much at all. In my opinion, the game doesn't reflect what an Animal Crossing game should be. It feels almost like it was a totally different game with Animal Crossing characters slapped onto it, with some ACNL features. Things that are intrinsically Animal Crossing, such as fishing, catching bugs, digging for fossils, filling the museum, and working on making your home nicer, aren't possible in this game.
There is also absolutely nothing related to money in the game- There's no buying and selling, and every item you use in the game is given for free. Expanding animal's homes is free. Building local businesses and structures is also free. And you only have to design one thing before the game decides you're done for that in-game day (Yes, they deleted the day-night cycle too).
But some things I just couldn't take seriously? For one, build a hospital, and I swear on Resetti's mother's grave, the place will instantly fill with patients, as if there was an anthrax attack on the town that somehow got missed. That, and when I built a department store and put a "furniture exhibit" where a restaurant was supposed to be, they still had the restaurant dialogue.
Overall, this game gets a rather substantial seal of disapproval from me. Feel free to discuss or debate this at your own leisure below.
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I like it because its relaxing for me, no rushing to do this or that. I also play it to get decorating ideas to use in NL later without spending too much money and then realizing I don't like the look. This especially goes for my players' houses that I turn into "building".
I'm playing it as a companion to my New Leaf towns as well, so like Tessa I am enjoying the differences from New Leaf.
I totally agree with a lot of your points though Nikolai and wished we'd got a new generation Animal Crossing now, but I can see a lot of promise for Animal Crossing's next iteration if they build on what was added to Happy Home Designer eg I'd love to see them take the next step to allow diagonal furniture placement now we have 1/2 space placements, continue outdoor decoration and even maybe allow control over villager placement (although random villagers and their placement do add to the organic nature of our towns).
One thing I did like that you didn't is decorating the town facilities, I think it'd be pretty cute to allow us in the next gen. game to have control over main street .. however, how they'd get around the inconsistencies you mentioned if people decorate outside the box, I dunno. Those problem might make it unlikely to occur.
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Well I think it was clear that the game wasn't going to be the standard game--it's essentially a spin-off of the series, so you kind of knew what you were getting into.
I think it's one of the best games honestly. There's no need to wait a day to do tasks--you can sit at your desk, and bam, new day. The game might decide you're done for that work day, but you can still keep playing.
I feel like if they made another New Leaf-esque game it would have been poorly done. I think this game is very refreshing to the series and offers a break. No need to worry about villagers moving out or weeds growing in HHD!
I love the creativity aspect of it. Getting to decorate town facilities that never existed in previous games is super exciting.
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The one thing I don't like is the buildings get unlocked too fast. This is a game that I just pick up and complete one house and than end for the day. I was surprised to see Isabelle at the office asking for a school early in the game. Than she was back again wanting more building completed. Than I found out you had to build more to get the HHA computer unlocked.
Thanks for the information about the restaurant in the department store. I put one in but really wanted an upscale furniture floor. I just unlocked some upscale furniture but not enough to complete a showroom. Think the town has a lot of restaurants and than the villagers ask for one in their houses.
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I agree with a lot that has been said here. While it isn't a true Animal Crossing game, it is a bit more than what they have come up with for the Wii U as far as Animal Crossing game. They also marketed Happy Home Designer just as it was so you kind of got an inside look at what we were getting ourselves into when getting the game.
Now I am still playing New Leaf all the time, but I have changed my playing schedule so to not kill my 2DS's battery (though it is quite possible that it has already happened.. I have to call Nintendo today ) but I agree with Llewis in that it's a great idea to play both New Leaf and Happy Home Designer together! Though for me... Happy Home Designer has taken up a bit more of my time than New Leaf than I would've liked to but I at least still know the goings on of my New Leaf so nobody moves without my say so.
I do agree with the shops comment in the fact that I think the game would be much more rewarding if you could only unlock 1 shop/building for maybe every 12-15 villager houses done. This would make the game last much longer, though I just tend to ignore Isabelle unless I just can't find anyone I really want to make a house for.
I find the new inner clock system with this game to be perfect because that really means that if I want to get on, redesign a facility or house and then get off. I'm not stuck doing nothing when I get on later in the day.
All in all, my opinions on Happy Home Designer are pretty good. While I do wish that they'd spread out the building of facilities, I do like the fact that as you unlock lessons, you are able to go back t villager's houses and redecorate to incorporate your new lessons. I also find the new in game timing/clock system to be a nice welcome and the only real downside to the game, in my opinion is the fact that you don't always have the added furniture you may want to add to certain villager's houses without having decorated a certain villager prior to the one you want to put the furniture in.
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I personally really like it. I LOVE the reference to the original Animal Crossing game; when you scan the Villager amiibo you get a golden Villager statue. It's not the best game ever, but it's far from the worst. 7.8/10 for me.
I've had the game for three days and I absolutely love it! Usually I'm either too lazy or too hasty with building and decorating stuff (talking Sims... my houses are either stunningly beautiful, each empty spot filled up with decorations etc, or half empty and ugly ) but this is so much fun! I take my sweet time with this game.
One thing that's really improved for me is how you don't have to push around objects any more, which is one of the main reasons why my house in ACNL doesn't look as good as I actually want. Also surprise visits from villagers when you finally decide to do some decorating
Anyway. I think I haven't unlocked enough or seen enough of the game to give a final opinion, but thus far I really love it!
I like it for when I am sick of fishing or catching bugs or whatever else on ACNL, so I go and design houses for a little bit. Then I am back to the old grind of making bells. But to each his own, I guess.
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Finally bought AC:HHD and I'm really looking forward to playing it! I originally wasn't going to bother because it wasn't a full game and looked repetitive and boring. I'm sure it IS really repetitive after a while but I was looking on Tumblr at loads of the cute creations that people have made, and it was too adorable for me to not buy it
Firstoff, I understand why you think that this isn't a real Animal Crossing game. Things like the fishing, bug catching and museum aren't present, and I can understand why that upsets you. I myself am very disappointed about the lack of a house for your player.
BUT, you have to understand: This is a spinoff game. Therefore, it doesn't have to have the same elements as a main-series entry.
Spinoff games can be very similar to their base franchise, or can be wildly different.
Like, for example, the Mario Sports spinoff series doesn't have the Mario-like platforming the series is known for at its core, and it's still hugely popular among gamers and non-gamers alike.
Pokemon Mystery Dungeon is a dungeon-crawler type game that doesn't necessarily have Pokemon-like battles at its very core, like the main-series games do, and actually has a very different battle system. It's still very popular.
Now- talking about your points about the hospital and furniture exhibit - It's a little bit odd that the hospital fills with patients upon building it, but on the other hand, it'd be tedious to wait for patients to come in before you can actually see how people like your creation.
And on the furniture exhibit, I feel like that's just asking too much of this game, for it to have different dialogue depending on what YOU do with what is supposed to be a restaurant. How are the villagers supposed to know that you decided to do something different with your restaurant?
Overall, I would've better liked a new entry in the series, but I also feel that if Nintendo was pressured to rush into making a new core series entry that there's a high chance they would've done it poorly. Nintendo will make new games in their core IP franchises when they're ready. That is how Nintendo has managed to maintain a rather solid level of quality for such a long legacy.